Mair Baxteresque propaganda

Occasionally I have a wee look at the referral sites to this blog, and chanced upon a conversation on a forum where my assorted rantings were dismissed as “Baxteresque propaganda” – which I think I’ll adopt as the blog’s strapline.  The medium is more important than the message, and if the message is delivered using Scots words, it’s less valid in the eyes of some than a message in Standard English.  It appears that if you speak the Glaswegian dialect of Scots you are incapable of joined up logic or presenting accurate information.  Someone’s cringe is showing, and it’s not mine.

There’s been a lot of cringing from Unionists over the past week, along with shocked incomprehension, misplaced anger, and what can only be described as out and out anti-Scottish racism. The realisation has dawned upon many south of the Border that Scotland really is serious about this whole indy lark, and there will not be the crushing victory for the no campaign which Better Together expected at the outset.  Consequently the comments sections in the UK online press have been swamped by hordes of new posters for whom the penny has just dropped that seismic changes are afoot in Caledonia.

I don’t know a single person who got a loving phone call from friends or relatives in England, begging Scotland to stay in the UK and telling us how much we’re wanted and needed.  On the other hand if you want hear that we’re ungrateful subsidy junkies who hate the English, that we’ve done nothing of any use or value and if we vote yes we’ll be evicted and left naked impoverished and alone in the cold next to the barbed wire fence of the UK Sovereign Base Territory at Faslane, you can knock yourself out in the comments section of the Mail, Express, Telegraph or Guardian.  It will make you feel dirty, but not in a sexy way.

Most of the Unionist posts make Katie Hopkins appear informed, erudite, and reasonable.  Some suffer from the quaint delusion that the border runs along Hadrian’s Wall, so we’d get to annexe Berwick and Newcastle, which is fine by me if folk in Newcastle or Berwick agree to it.  Most think that the oil in Scottish waters doesn’t belong to Scotland at all, it belongs to the oil companies or will be split in negotiations and Westminster will take most of it.  Eh no, think again, and go look up the phrase “territorial asset”.

Almost all of them think that an independent Scotland would have been liable for the entire costs of bailing out RBS and HBOS, even though most of their business is conducted in England and the operated under Westminster’s regulatory system.  (An independent Scotland would only have been liable for that part of the banks’ business operating within Scotland.)

But my personal favourite is when some person who doesn’t know what’s devolved and what isn’t, who knows nothing about Scotland’s true financial position and would be hopelessly lost in Scotland’s political landscape even with a TamTam in their car, informs independence supporters that they haven’t thought things through.  Deep down such folk believe that deprived of the higher perspective of Dahn Sarf, Scots aren’t really capable of making informed decisions.

Most believe Scotland is an impoverished basket case, and only the good graces of the UK save us from going Greek.  None make the next logical step, which is that if Scotland is indeed an impoverished basket case, then the 300 plus years of the Union have been a disaster.  Far from being the most successful partnership of nations in history, if what they believe about Scotland is true, the Union has ruined Scotland.  Ending it would be a kindness – in fact it’s a moral imperative.  Wounded pride, misconceptions and aborted logic make up the entirety of the Unionist case.

Irrespective of the precise nature of their misunderstanding, like the “Baxteresque” commentator they regard all arguments originating from north of the Border as being less valid than any auld mince uttered in  the RP vowels of George Osborne, or “neutral” parties like José Manuel Barroso.  No, they really do think the European People’s Party poster boy is neutral.  Bless.

Of course it’s not the fault of the average English punter for believing that Barroso is neutral in this debate.  Norman Smith, the BBC’s chief political correspondent said on the national news that Barroso was neutral.  In the real world Barroso is as neutral as the BBC, which isn’t very neutral at all.  But if you’re getting all your news on Scotland from the UK media, it’s scarcely surprising that you have no clue what’s really going on.

The BBC’s neutral ahem Smith also claimed that Mark Carney of the Bank of England had said that a currency union between Scotland and the rUK would be as difficult as making a working Mars lander out of 3 lego bricks, a sticking plaster, and a frayed length of string – or words to that effect.  English, Welsh and Northern Irish viewers would never know that Carney didn’t say that at all, instead he gave a studiedly neutral statement setting out the measures necessary – for both Scotland and the rest of the UK – to make a currency union work.

The barrage of negativity, of insults and ignorance is wearisome and sometimes upsetting.  But it is also necessary, because it reveals to Scotland what our place in this Union really is, and shows us what the rest of the UK thinks about us.  It strips away the rhetoric of Better Together and reveals the Union in its true form.  It’s not pretty is it, yet these are supposedly our closest friends and allies, who are so close to us that we are not foreigners to them.

But despite this supposed closeness, it’s becoming plain to everyone in Scotland that our country is deeply deeply alien to the English establishment.  They don’t know us, they don’t understand us, and they have no concept of what is or is not in Scotland’s best interests.  Yet these are the people who think they can do a better job of governing us than we can do ourselves.  We are already foreigners to them, and we have been all along.

So as yer man on the BBC said, it’s all about trust.  Who do the Scottish electorate trust more?  It’s not about trusting Alex Salmond despite the increasingly frantic efforts of the BBC and the rest of the UK media to portray this as a one man crusade founded in hatred of England.  We’re not voting for Alex Salmond in September, nor are we giving our opinions about the people of England.  We are choosing between the Westminster system or the talents, resources, and abilities of Scotland and her people.

Only one of these parties has been lying, threatening, and bullying.  Only one really understands Scotland and her people.  Only one has a vision of the heights to which Scotland can climb.  It’s not a difficult choice to make.  Lets jist dae it.

18 comments on “Mair Baxteresque propaganda

  1. gerry parker says:

    In the process, the Scottish electorate are being educated to the realities of the situation. Just today someone said to me ” They’re aw talking pish, the pound is an internationally tradable currency”

  2. Jim Wylie says:

    Like you, I know of no one who has been contacted from England with a plea for the union. In fact, I’m beginning to wonder if my sister in Sheffield isn’t talking to me. As for language, the whole online debate has been a shot in the arm for the freedom of the Scots tongue (although predictive text does have its disadvantages).
    Onyhoo-weel done, Paul. Gaun yersel.

  3. liz says:

    Yeah, people are much more informed.
    I think only a few years ago most young folk weren’t interested in politics but now you hear people discussing things like how much Scotland contributes in terms of exports etc.

    It’s great in so many ways – things will never be the same again – the illusion is gone and it won’t be back.

    • Jim Wylie says:

      You are right about the illusion having gone.
      In a former life I was a teacher. To my lasting shame, as a young teacher I belted children for no better reason than keeping them in order. The belt was never mentioned in teacher training, and using it was what was expected of me. I stopped using it many years before it was banned, partly because, with more experience, I found that I didn’t need it, but partly too because children began to refuse the belt. They had seen through the con and realised that authority in schools was only what they allowed it to be. Scots have seen through the con. No matter what the referendum result, many, many Scots than ever before now realise that Westminster is a lying, bullying authority that needs our compliance to continue, that the BBC is not impartial, and that our newspapers do not tell the truth.

      • Eilean says:

        I occasionally link to an article in one of the nationals. When I do I take a look at the BTL comments. It can be a bewildering and surreal experience. It is like snorkeling in sewage.

        What strikes me every time is the sense of entitlement that some of these “little Englanders” display. The outrage, the “How very bloody dare they!” attitude.

        It would be at least a tiny little bit more palatable if a fraction of them had the first fucking clue about what they are commenting about. I know that they get their info on the referendum via BBC UK but I think that if you are going to comment publicly on any subject you should at least avail yourself with a modicum of up to date facts. Not something that was dealt with eighteen months ago. If for no other reason than not making a total arse of yourself. I mean some of the ridiculous notions that some of them come out with are pure and utter mince.

        I often wonder why pro independence folk bother arguing with these halfwits. These “ladies” are not for turning. And I don’t think that many undecided will venture much past the first twenty odd comments.

        By the way “Baxteresque propaganda” Oh the banter!

  4. Eilean says:

    Thats odd! I didnt mean to “reply” to Jim Wylie (sorry Jim) I meant the above as a comment.

    Nae doubt its my fault!

  5. James D says:

    ” It is like snorkeling in sewage.” – chortle! Luckily I wasn’t drinking tea at that moment. Brilliant! Hilarious! Paul – you’re the best anology script writer I’ve ever met! There’s a job in there somewhere, in a not too distant Independent Scotland – and they say there’s no humour in the IndyRef debate.

  6. jake says:

    I was taken aback by a comment last night ( 18th Feb) on the STV Agenda programme. Germaine Greer said that she hadn’t realised that Scottish Bank notes were ” just aliases” for Bank of England Sterling notes. Somehow or other she had previously thought that Scottish Bank notes were in a very real way a separate currency.
    As I said, I was quite taken aback by this, but thinking about it, it explains a lot of the rhetoric that we heard and still hear in the press about bailing out Scottish Banks. It’s misinformation, to the extent that Ms Greer is not alone in this, that also informs public opinion in rUK about whether or not Scotland can or should be allowed to keep Sterling. It’s left me wondering whether the Press have similar misconceptions about Scottish currency, both now and in the future, or whether and to what extent they misinform and exploit this.

  7. Macart says:

    “The barrage of negativity, of insults and ignorance is wearisome and sometimes upsetting. But it is also necessary, because it reveals to Scotland what our place in this Union really is, and shows us what the rest of the UK thinks about us.”

    Couldn’t agree more. I’ve been posting links for the past week to anyone with a vote I could think of, to that paragon of ‘right on’ thinking, the Guardian. The articles and BTL commentary were most educational. I made a point of the Guardian mainly because, this title was meant to represent the soft cuddly side of London media. I wanted to highlight the extent to which the media’s and Westminster’s narrative has affected their reading public. And boy, no disappointment there. They’ve bought it hook line and sinker with only the odd voice of sanity in attendance.

    Its awful stuff to read, but useful in informing the debate where it counts. Right here in Scotland.

  8. ANDY NIMMO says:

    I agree wholeheartedly with the article and comments but please, please can we do away with broadly condemning the English. Little Englander – Yes. Westminster – Yes, but don’t let’s class comments by Better Together and Westminster as ‘English’.
    I for one will feel a tinge of sadness and guilt when we do become Independent at the thought of leaving behind the decent conscience driven people of England to face the corrupt monster that is ‘consciousless’ Westminster.

    • Turra Loon says:

      Andy , Why did the people of England vote in the corrupt monster that is ‘consciousless’ Westminster?. It was not us Scots who voted for Cameron and his crew of millionaires, most of whom have not done a days work in their lives. I feel sorry for the English now , but it was their vote. I hope they vote them out next time. Meanwhile you are always welcome up here.

      • ANDY NIMMO says:

        That’s lovely to know – especially since I was born in Drumnadrochit and lived here for 50+years apart from ‘holidays’ in RAF and Saudi Arabia.

        Thanks just the same

        • Eilean says:

          Andy I meant no insult to your average English person. Similar to yourself being Scottish but spending my “holidays” in the army. Consequently I spent several years posted around the Surrey, Hampshire area where there are “little Englanders” in abundance. The level of small mindedness and self entitlement is what defines this group.

      • Eilean says:

        Yup! they are the ones who voted in a government that canceled flood defence infrastructure projects to “save” millions of pounds and payed off half the staff in the environment agency.

  9. Sagacity says:

    Add to the list of MSM with sewage for snorkeling in the Financial Times. Silly me for thinking that at least you would get a better class of insult but it was truly grotesque to behold.

    One thing guaranteed following the referendum is that whatever the outcome there will be a residue of bad feeling in both directions between Scotland and England – pretty well all of it created by the BT campaign in their desperation to cudgel us into rejecting our birthright to Independence.

  10. wee e says:

    It appears that if you speak the Glaswegian dialect of Scots you are incapable of joined up logic or presenting accurate information. Someone’s cringe is showing, and it’s not mine.

    I learned (was drilled) to write as though I’m really a three-piece suit wearing Knightsbridge native: because I speak the way most people in the west of Scotland speak, and wanted to be seen as reasonably intelligent — the two being just self-evidently incompatible. Result — stilted and long-winded. Glad you rose above all that. Your style’s all the better for it!

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